The Internet consists of thousands of independent domains with different, and sometimes competing, business interests. However, the current interdomain routing protocol (BGP) limits each router to using a single route for each destination prefix, which may not satisfy the diverse requirements of end users. Recent proposals for source routing offer an alternative where end hosts or edge routers select the end-to-end paths. However, source routing leaves transit domains with very little control and introduces difficult scalability and security challenges. In this paper, we present a multi-path interdomain routing protocol called MIRO that offers substantial flexibility, while giving transit domains control over the flow of traffic through their infrastructure and avoiding state explosion in disseminating reachability information. In MIRO, routers learn default routes through the existing BGP protocol, and arbitrary pairs of domains can negotiate the use of additional paths (bound to tunnels in the data plane) tailored to their special needs. MIRO retains the simplicity of BGP for most traffic, and remains backwards compatible with BGP to allow for incremental deployability. Experiments with Internet topology and routing data illustrate that MIRO offers tremendous flexibility for path selection with reasonable overhead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-182
Number of pages12
JournalComputer Communication Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications


  • BGP
  • Flexibility
  • Inter-domain routing
  • Multipath routing
  • Scalability


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